AP - Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders on Tuesday received the endorsement of MoveOn.org, a grassroots organization that has been at the forefront of liberal causes.
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MoveOn says the Vermont senator was supported by 78.6 percent of its membership in an online vote of more than 340,000 members. Hillary Clinton received 14.6 percent and Martin O'Malley received 0.9 percent with the remaining members urging no endorsement.
"MoveOn members are feeling the Bern," said Ilya Sheyman, executive director of MoveOn.org Political Action. "We will mobilize aggressively to add our collective people power to the growing movement behind the Sanders campaign, starting with a focus on voter turnout in Iowa and New Hampshire
The endorsement was widely expected. MoveOn encouraged Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren to run for president but when she declined last year many of its supporters got behind Sanders' campaign.
The group lists 8 million members and says it will mobilize nearly 75,000 of its members in Iowa and New Hampshire, which hold the campaign's first two contests.
MoveOn endorsed President Barack Obama during the 2008 primaries and helped rally Democrats in opposition to the Iraq War. The group was formed in response to the impeachment of President Bill Clinton, with its supporters urging Congress to censure the president and move on to more pressing matters facing the American people.